December 16, 2011 admin


Chandigarh, December 16: The Right to Education is laying a special focus on bringing Children with special needs in the mainstream education and Punjab has already taken the lead by enrolling such 99853 students for inclusive education.
In a regional workshop held here to train the teachers Mr. Husan Lal Secretary School Education said that the Punjab Government was fully committed to provide inclusive education to children with special needs (CWSN) in the general school set-up, provided their condition allows them to attend a general school and the remaining CWSN were being covered through alternative models such as EGS/AIE, Resource Rooms, Home-based Education etc., as per the child’s specific requirements available under SSA and as envisaged under Right to Education 2009. He informed that a total number of 125828 children with special needs have been identified, out of which 99853 children have been enrolled in mainstream schools where they were being provided remedial teaching as per need to retain them in the school system, 10716 were being provided resource support through teaching in Resource Rooms set-up in the general schools and 8676 children with severe and profound forms of disabilities were being covered under the Home Based Education program. Thus, a total of 119245 CWSN have been covered under various interventions till date, he added.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. B.Purushartha, Director General School Education emphasised the need to bring attitudinal change towards children with special needs so that they never feel neglected besides encouraging them to take the challenges of life. He said that attitudinal barriers were being removed with the help of awareness generation programs, inclusive sports and cultural programs & by conducting teacher training seminars. He informed that to provide appropriate educational services to children with special needs in the most suitable environment in neighbourhood schools, the focus has been on strengthening the general school system to address and meet the diverse needs of CWSN in an inclusive set-up and this was being achieved through increased emphasis on infrastructure & manpower development, improvement in access by removing physical barriers, awareness generation to remove attitudinal barriers, and provision of adequate support services to the CWSN.
He said that the RTE Act 2009 entitles all children in the 6-14 years age group to a right to free and compulsory elementary education in a neighbourhood school. Children with special needs also would have to be enrolled and retained in neighbourhood schools. The key objective of RTE & SSA was Universalization of Elementary Education (UEE). Three important aspects of UEE are access, enrolment and retention of all children in the 6-14 years age group.
On this occasion, Dr. Anupriya Chadha, Chief Consultant, Inclusive Education and Ms. Sushma Sharma, Deputy State Project Director briefly outlined the purpose of this regional workshop. Ms. Salony Kaur informed that this workshop was being attended by representatives of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab , Haryana and Chandgarh.

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